Anyway, a few districts have been mentioned in the news, where the militants are supposed to be still at large - Lahad Datu, Semporna and Kunak. My Mama is a frequent traveller to Semporna, en route to her projects on the islands, and....has also visited the least known Kunak. Serious! Now, how many of you know where this place is? Hmmmm....? (raised one eyebrow!)
Kunak first came into our radar when we saw an agriculture TV programme that highlighted Kunak's salak madu. Salak is a kind of fruit from the palm family that has a snake-like brown skin and white flesh that tastes kinda sweet, sour and tart. The one from Kunak is said to be extra sweet (hence madu or honey) and crunchy.
Hmmm...people say the proof of the pudding is in the eating. In this case, we'd have to find the fruit and eat it first. Or so my Mama said. And so we made a more than 20km detour off the Tawau-Semporna road into Kunak, in our quest for a fruit.
|First roundabout we came to in Kunak has these humongous prawns basking in the sun.|
|Then we stopped at this row of stalls selling tidbits and fruits, and ask around for the whereabouts of the fruits.|
|We found some! They were selling for about RM4 per kilogramme. The stall owner was kind enough to give directions to the fruit farm.|
|Just go along the road from the fruit stalls until you find this sign by the roadside.|
|Not too far off the main road, you'll see this signboard. The name of the fruit farm owner is Sudirman or better known as Pak Sudir among the locals.|
|The salak trees resemble oil palm trees, only smaller.|
|Bunches of unripe salak fruits upclose. The young ones are very thorny. Oooh...beware of snakes!|
|I assume that these are the seedlings. Hmm...maybe should have bought one or two and try to plant at home.|
|Is this woofie the guardian of the farm? He was friendly though. I hope he's fed for his services.|
Brad's notes: Our verdict? The salak fruit from Kunak is sweet as honey and crunchy, as publicised. Nowadays, whenever we come across anyone selling this fruit, the first question we'll ask: is this from Kunak? har har har *evil laughs*